Japan's Yamagata Prefecture is a gorgeous northern paradise famous for breathtaking landscapes, skiing, hot springs, and food culture. From ancient temples atop towering mountains to the unbelievable ‘snow monster’ frozen trees, we’ll guide you through what makes the Yamagata region so unique!
Popular Things to See and Do in Yamagata Prefecture - Japan's Land of Snow Monsters
Beloved for its sprawling nature and grand mountains, Yamagata Prefecture, located on the Japan Sea side of the Tohoku Region, is notorious for its astoundingly deep snowfall - the deepest in Japan! With plenty of ways to enjoy this beautiful snow, such as skiing, relaxing in hot springs, or taking in the unique sights, Yamagata encapsulates everything about winter in Japan!
Even outside winter the region bursts with activity! Hiking, boat cruises, fruit production (including the largest cherry harvest in Japan), and a rich cuisine culture make it well worth exploring any time of the year! Uncover the mysteries of Yamagata, including the iconic ‘snow monsters’ and more, with LIVE JAPAN’s Yamagata guide below!
Ginzan Onsen Guide: What to Do in Japan's Fabled Hot Spring Village
Even amongst the hundreds of stunning onsen towns spread throughout Japan, Ginzan Onsen stands alone! Its photogenic main street, lined by charming ryokan inns separated by a river crisscrossed by bridges has become one of Japan’s most iconic scenes. Being the definitive hot spring for Tohoku locals and a growing must-visit destination for visitors from abroad, you can’t miss putting this on your itinerary! Join us as we step back in time at Ginzan Onsen!
Kaminoyama Onsen Guide: Best Things to Do in Japan's Samurai Town!
Kaminoyama Onsen was discovered about 560 years ago in the southern part of Yamagata. Resting at the foot of Kaminoyama Castle, it quickly grew into a prosperous inn town on the Ushu Highway throughout the Edo period.
These days, much of this vibrant history remains through its numerous samurai residences and other relics brimming with local history. Refreshing strolls through untouched streets, relishing the legendary konjac cuisine, and soaking in piping hot onsen are just some of the treats awaiting you in Kaminoyama Onsen!
Zao Onsen: Snow Monsters and Fairytale Landscapes in Japan’s Winter Paradise
Zao Onsen is one of the most popular sightseeing spots in the Tohoku region - and for good reason! The Mount Zao range, which spans between Yamagata and Miyagi prefectures, brims with hot springs, ski slopes, and the now-famous ‘juhyo’ frozen trees.
Juhyo is a jaw-dropping natural phenomenon resulting from layers of snow blown from fierce winds enveloping the trees to create what the locals dub ‘snow monsters.’ This photogenic scene has become one of Japan’s most iconic winter sights, with travelers coming from all over the globe just to see it for themselves! Find out all about this frozen wonderland and more with LIVE JAPAN’s Zao Onsen guide below!
Top 15 Tohoku Ski Resorts & Snowboarding Areas
From Niigata to Niseko, when planning a Japan ski holiday, there’s an almost overwhelming amount of choice! Yamagata, with its prime location just north of Tokyo and ample winter resorts, is one of the strongest contenders for the best skiing in Japan!
To help find a slope that suits you, we’ve compiled guides on our top 10 Yamagata and Tohoku ski resorts. With shuttle buses directly to the station, loads of nearby attractions, and multilingual staff, these resorts are loved by overseas tourists and Japanese locals alike!
For those looking to spice up their Japan itinerary with a taste of untouched wilderness surrounded by historical buildings and hot springs, Yamagata should be on the top of your list! From winter to summer, Yamagata offers travelers a pristine insight into the depth and richness of Japan’s often overlooked northern cultures. Get your Yamagata escapade off on the right foot with LIVE JAPAN’s comprehensive coverage here!
*Prices and options mentioned are subject to change.
*Unless stated otherwise, all prices include tax.
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